Thursday, January 17, 2013
How to get the Heels rolling again
By Luke Lapinski
North Carolina is facing more of an uphill battle than usual right now. The Tar Heels have dropped three of their last six, and currently sit at 1-2 in the conference, 11-5 overall. They're unranked at the moment, and need to get back on track in a hurry with Maryland (14-3) and No. 14 North Carolina State (14-3) up on the schedule in the next ten days.
So what is UNC missing right now? Well, four NBA players off of last year's roster for one. But there is certainly talent on this year's group as well. James Michael McAdoo is a projected first-round pick, P.J. Hairston is a former McDonald's All-American who was the No. 13 overall recruit in the 2011 class and this season's freshman haul was collectively ranked No. 8 nationally. But growing pains are evident halfway through the season and our own Jay Bilas thinks some of the deficiencies can be remedied. He notes that forcing difficult jump shots is setting off a negative chain of events for the Heels, putting them in tough spots offensively and hindering their ability to establish a defensive identity the other way. Developing a reliable post presence would be huge and, as Bilas also points out, the key here is for Roy Williams' group to keep improving rather than get too discouraged. Their record at the moment isn't bad, it just might not be what they had planned on. At the same time, their best basketball should still be ahead of them this season. And, if that proves to be the case, they can still be dangerous.